Dept. of Human Services v. A. B.

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Juvenile Law
  • Date Filed: 07-06-2017
  • Case #: A163190
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Garrett, J. for the Court; DeVore, P.J.; & Duncan, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Under the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, “the term ‘foster care’ . . . describes arrangements of such duration as to be integral parts of the rearing process, as opposed to arrangements that are presumptively temporary or for limited purposes.”

DHS and Child appealed the juvenile court’s judgment in which the court set aside its earlier judgment terminating Mother’s parental rights, and changed the permanency plan from adoption to durable guardianship. The court appointed maternal Grandfather (who lived in California) as guardian. DHS and Child assigned error to the juvenile court’s authority under ORS 419.366B to place Child with Grandfather in California. On appeal, DHS and Child argued the juvenile court violated the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) because the juvenile court’s order “caused” Child “to be sent or brought into any other party state . . . for placement in foster care” without complying with the laws of the receiving state. Grandfather contended that ICPC did not apply to durable guardianships because the term “foster care” only applies to placements involving public funding. Under the ICPC, “the term ‘foster care’ . . . describes arrangements of such duration as to be integral parts of the rearing process, as opposed to arrangements that are presumptively temporary or for limited purposes.” A child placed in a durable guardianship is a “child who ‘cannot safely return to a parent within a reasonable time,’ ORS 419B.366(5)(a), and therefore is a “child requiring placement.” The Court of Appeals reasoned that a child in a durable guardianship . . . is included in the class of children covered by the ICPC.  See ORS 417.200, Art I(a); cf. Dept. of Human Services v. J. G., 260 Or App 500, 517 (2014).  The Court held the juvenile court violated the ICPC because its judgments had the effect of “caus[ing]” Child to be sent to California for placement in foster care without California’s prior approval. Reversed and remanded.  

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